Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Iced Over

It was a very cold morning in North Central Florida.  We made it down below 30 degrees last night and there was ice everywhere.  I have seen frost behind the barn many times, but haven't seem it throughout the park very often.  It disappeared quickly though, and I tried to snap as many pictures as I could.  I would have gotten more, but my batteries were wearing down in my camera.  I could only keep it on for a photo or two at a time.  I still managed to take too many pictures though.  I'll have plenty to show you on my days off.
When I left the house this morning, there was ice on my windshield.  I started the truck, took some photos, and ate my bagel while the truck warmed up and melted the ice. 

Before long, I was ready to go.  I made my drive through the park and headed to the office.  I went for my walk as soon as I got to work so that I could catch some frost photos.  I headed for the spring dock first to see if it had become submerged over night.  I stopped to turn off the faucets near the restroom on the way and found this lovely little ice sculpture that had formed from the dripping faucet.  The black tube in the background is a hose, not a snake.  No worries.

It happened.  There was a thin sheet of water over the whole floor of the dock.  We are now at the point where cleaning will be necessary when the water goes down.  I really hope it goes away quickly.

As my walk continued, I met up with our volunteer and another co-worker.  We all walked together to the cabin and then down to the river.  I took the usual photos along the way as well as the majority of my frost-covered-plants photos.  I was amazed that there was frost on the tops of the bouys and even the river dock was slick.  The small crystals of ice on the railing of the dock sparkled in the sun.  The cool tree across the river is barely showing any of its tentacle legs because the water is so high.
When we had soaked in all of the sights this morning and we were sufficiently numb from the cold, we all retreated to the office.  My co-workers got started on their own indoor projects and I started on the paperwork.  I did the usual daily paperwork and answered some e-mails.  I scheduled a day for the dead trees to finally come down at Adams Tract and sent out an e-mail invitation to other parks associated with mine to have a 'tree trimming party' the next day.  We will get a big group together to make quick work of chopping up the wood from the three trees and turning it all into firewood for the camp.  I decided to do some maintenance on our chainsaws to prepare for the fun.  I took them both apart and used the air compressor to blow all of the oily tree shavings out of them.  I cleaned their filters and put them back together again.  I also took them to a nearby store to have their blades sharpened.  After I left the store, I headed over to Adams Tract.  I visited with the volunteers and took a walk around the camp with a volunteer and her dog.  We took a look at how high the water was there.  There are a lot of rocks and steps that I know are there but I couldn't see today.

I picked up the garbage from the camp and their leaf blower because it has been giving them problems.  When I headed back to Troy, one of my coworkers got started on servicing the blower and our volunteer put the chainsaws away.  I finished up some more paperwork, checked my e-mail, and headed home to brace myself for another freezing night.


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